Letting Bad Habits Creep Into Your Golf Game

How hard do you work at your golf game? Do you spend hours honing specialty shots to lower your scores? I know I have and will continue to do so. Unfortunately, there are times when my efforts are undone because I allow bad habits from creeping into my game. It happens slowly until one day I am not hitting a specific shot as well as I have practiced. It makes me wonder what happened and fall into a fit of retrospection. Letting bad habits creep into our golf game will always cost us strokes in the long run.

There are many different hitting mistakes that can eek its way into my game. I try to remain vigilant, but sometimes my mind wanders and I make a successful poor mechanical swing. That is right, for some reason, my poor swing had great results. That is a part of golf for sure. The challenging part for me (I would imagine all golfers) is letting the bad habit (s) to persist and damage my overall game.

Right about now, you are likely looking for examples of poor habits that I try to avoid. The first is choosing the right club for the situation. Many of us automatically grab a club for distance regardless of the hazards and course conditions. We think that this a good way to play but in fact is a poor way to approach our round. I generally make this mistake when I am mentally focused on something other than playing golf. Sometimes it persists for a few rounds because I am playing okay, that is until a disastrous round shows up to warn me to pay attention.

Another example of allowing bad habits dominate my game is around the green. I usually pick the right club for the conditions of my ball; that is until I make a great chip with a wedge. Then suddenly, that wedge is in my regardless of the situation. Then I find myself adjusting all aspects of my mechanics to make that wedge fit the situation. I do this instead of changing clubs and keeping my mechanics consistent.

I could continue to give more examples, but I think you get the point. I will say in my own defense, that the bad habits do not last as long as in the past. This fortunate turn of events is a result of understanding my limitations and my swing mechanics. Additionally, I have honed my course management skills to a point where any lasting deviation from what should happen. My understanding of my game allows me to revert back a steady state of good play.

Golfing a sport that is really all about the long game. There are no quick fixes to playing great golf. For me, it is about building a foundation of good mechanics and refining them as I plod along on my journey. There is no room for bad habits and I will continue to remain on guard to keep them at bay!

I am a grateful golfer! See you on the links!

6 thoughts on “Letting Bad Habits Creep Into Your Golf Game

  1. Yup. I got your point. These habits can ruin our game in long run. Especially, the one you mentioned about adjusting the club instead of changing. Well, same here. It is kind of a challenge to be persistent. But yes, we need to stop them from creeping in. By Noe, I am gonna be more careful.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Routine. The solution to most of our problems, but also a hindrance to change and/or a trap we sometimes set for ourselves. Routine makes change more difficult. The longer we’ve done something the more prone it is to creep back in even long after we try and stop. We ingrained it and it stays with us. The only way to fight that is with more routine. Sometimes rigidly adhered to. But I don’t think it’s entirely stoppable. Not even for the best in the game. The unconscious we have no control over so we have to do our best to make sure we are making conscious decisions out there.

    Played with a 90 year old gentleman today. The forward tee’s made for a fun and interesting first nine. And also broke up the routine a bit. Hitting hybrids off the tee to reach par 4’s makes for a pretty easy scoring day that’s for sure. Don’t know what I scored. I hit too many balls while playing the back nine alone and stopped even trying to track after 12 when I got confused but I was 5 under at the 9 and still there after 11. Pretty sure I parred 12 too, but can’t be positive. I did lip one of the putts and that could have been the ball I was playing. I had three pretty close to each other and the balls I was using had 3 dots colored on them covering the numbers. They all looked exactly alike so I couldn’t tell them apart. Didn’t think of that when I was marking them. lol Guess I need a routine for that too.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Jim, achieving that foundational level is key because our games change from day to day, no matter how hard we try to be consistent. Making the adjustments as small as possible and relying on your foundation is so important, as you have mentioned. I keep getting reminded of that when I try a big change. It almost never works.

    I look back at my lesson notes from the last four years and the most success I experienced is when my pro just tweaked something, like my balance at address or my grip pressure. Those are usually the best and easiest to work with.

    Thanks,

    Brian

    Liked by 1 person

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